PC Build questions whether to choose AMD APU or AMD CPU

rsubu98

Posts: 6   +0
Hi Experts,

I am new to PC Build and have few questions around it. Please guide me with the below queries.

Purpose:

  • System should boot fast and should be smooth.
  • I need to connect my PC with multiple monitors or laptop screens for multi-tasking.
  • Daily usage like Microsoft Word, PPT, Excel. Copying files. Web browsing etc.
  • I want to play games like GTA 5, assassin's creed and any other games similar to that. (I am not a Pro gamer)
  • I do not do any video editing works.


Specs that I might need:

  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3xxx (Not sure whether to go with AMD APU or normal AMD CPU)
  • GPU: Not sure which one to pick
  • RAM: 8+8GB DDR4
  • SSD: 250GB M.2 NVME
  • HDD: 2TB SATA3.0
  • Motherboard: Should contain all the required ports. Should be capable for upgrading at later stage.
  • Power Supply: 550W or more (Not very sure what to pick as per the above specs)
  • Monitor: With 120Hz or 144Hz display assuming the game will run at more than 100 FPS
Questions that I have:

  • Based on my purpose that I mentioned above, do I need a CPU with integrated graphic card? If I go with AMD CPU without integrated graphics and a dedicated GPU, what problems I would be facing? Can I connect my PC with multiple monitors?
  • What GPU is best of normal gaming that I mentioned above?
  • I am planning to install games in HDD, will that affect the game performance? Will installing games in SDD improve the performance significantly?
  • Do I really need a 120Hz or 144Hz monitor to get the 100 FPS experience? Can I feel the 100FPS in a normal 60Hz monitor?
  • What power supply will be correct for my PC?
Thanks for your response!!

Thanks

Subbu
 

neeyik

Posts: 1,118   +1,102
Staff member
Lots to pick through here, so let's begin with the most important part: the CPU. Considering that you want to play games, going with an AMD APU isn't a good idea. They're very capable CPUs, but the graphics processor in them isn't designed for anything more than basic gaming.

So I would suggest a Ryzen 5 3600 and a discrete graphics card to match. Not sure what your available budget is, but based on what you've listed so far, I would recommend something like an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Super or, if you want to stay solely AMD, a Radeon RX 590.

If you can afford better than these, then a GeForce RTX 2060 Super or a Radeon RX 5700. All of these discrete graphics card have plenty of outputs and easily support at least 3 monitors - sometimes more, sometimes less (it depends on the card and the resolution of the monitors used).

Putting games on a HDD typically will just improve load times; some titles may show a small increase in performance if they stream data off the drive constantly (e.g. GTA5) but given that you've only got a 256 GB SSD, I recommend just having Windows and general applications on that drive, and keep games and documents on the HDD.

You don't need a high refresh rate monitor to experience the benefits of high fps gaming (that manifests itself in the form of smoother gameplay, decreased input lag), however your eyes and brain will thank you for using one. Once you've used a high refresh rate monitor, you'll never want to use anything else.

A 550W PSU should be more than sufficient for your needs; don't skimp on getting the cheapest one you can find, though. I'd recommend either the Corsair RM550X or the Seasonic Focus PX 550.
 
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rsubu98

Posts: 6   +0
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #3
Lots to pick through here, so let's begin with the most important part: the CPU. Considering that you want to play games, going with an AMD APU isn't a good idea. They're very capable CPUs, but the graphics processor in them isn't designed for anything more than basic gaming.

So I would suggest a Ryzen 5 3600 and a discrete graphics card to match. Not sure what your available budget is, but based on what you've listed so far, I would recommend something like an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Super or, if you want to stay solely AMD, a Radeon RX 590.

If you can afford better than these, then a GeForce RTX 2060 Super or a Radeon RX 5700. All of these discrete graphics card have plenty of outputs and easily support at least 3 monitors - sometimes more, sometimes less (it depends on the card and the resolution of the monitors used).

Putting games on a HDD typically will just improve load times; some titles may show a small increase in performance if they stream data off the drive constantly (e.g. GTA5) but given that you've only got a 256 GB SSD, I recommend just having Windows and general applications on that drive, and keep games and documents on the HDD.

You don't need a high refresh rate monitor to experience the benefits of high fps gaming (that manifests itself in the form of smoother gameplay, decreased input lag), however your eyes and brain will thank you for using one. Once you've used a high refresh rate monitor, you'll never want to use anything else.

A 550W PSU should be more than sufficient for your needs; don't skimp on getting the cheapest one you can find, though. I'd recommend either the Corsair RM550X or the Seasonic Focus PX 550.
Thanks a lot for your answer!!
I dont play games very often, but when I play games I expect smooth gameplay with high or decent FPS.
If I dont have a integrated graphic card (APU), all the other activities like Web browsing,videos,Word,PPT,etc will run on dedicated graphic card. In this case, will there be any problems like heating issue, more power consumption or any others ?
 

neeyik

Posts: 1,118   +1,102
Staff member
Nearly all discrete graphics cards use more power than an integrated graphics processor, but this is why a decent PSU is a must. Obviously, the more powerful the card, the more power will be consumed (and the majority of that power is turned into heat).

The power draw of the cards I suggested is as follows:

  • GeForce GTX 1660 Super = 125W
  • Radeon RX 590 = 175W
  • GeForce RTX 2060 Super = 175W
  • Radeon RX 5700 = 180W

These may sound quite high, but firstly these are typical maximum power draws (I.e. the card may use more, but it's more likely to be these figures) and secondly, a Ryzen 5 3600 is only 65W at peak, so you'll have more than enough power to spare with a good 550W PSU.

You may want to consider how everything is going to be cooled. The Ryzen will come with a heatsink & fan, and while it's okay, a better system will keep the CPU temperature under more control and shift more heat through the PC system. Speaking of which, what case do you plan on using?
 

rsubu98

Posts: 6   +0
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #5
Nearly all discrete graphics cards use more power than an integrated graphics processor, but this is why a decent PSU is a must. Obviously, the more powerful the card, the more power will be consumed (and the majority of that power is turned into heat).

The power draw of the cards I suggested is as follows:

  • GeForce GTX 1660 Super = 125W
  • Radeon RX 590 = 175W
  • GeForce RTX 2060 Super = 175W
  • Radeon RX 5700 = 180W

These may sound quite high, but firstly these are typical maximum power draws (I.e. the card may use more, but it's more likely to be these figures) and secondly, a Ryzen 5 3600 is only 65W at peak, so you'll have more than enough power to spare with a good 550W PSU.

You may want to consider how everything is going to be cooled. The Ryzen will come with a heatsink & fan, and while it's okay, a better system will keep the CPU temperature under more control and shift more heat through the PC system. Speaking of which, what case do you plan on using?
For instance, if am playing a game for 2 hours, then I assume 550W will be consumed and if I am doing some other basic works for another 2 hours then usage of power will be around 100-150W depending on the usage. PSU Watt is the max power a PC can use. Is my understanding correct ?

I haven't looked upon the PC case/cabinet yet. I am assuming that case would be common for any component we choose for PC. Am I correct ?
 

neeyik

Posts: 1,118   +1,102
Staff member
For instance, if am playing a game for 2 hours, then I assume 550W will be consumed and if I am doing some other basic works for another 2 hours then usage of power will be around 100-150W depending on the usage. PSU Watt is the max power a PC can use. Is my understanding correct ?
Well let's say you end up with the following PC specs:

  • Ryzen 5 3600 = 65W
  • Motherboard = 30W
  • GeForce GTX 1660 Super = 125W
  • 16 DDR4 = 10W
  • 256GB SSD = 5W
  • 2TB HDD = 5W

Peak power consumption would be 240W; let's add on another 20% for efficiency and other components, and you've got just under 290W. PSU's are less efficient at lower power draws, so your 550W PSU will be taking around 350W from the wall socket - well within its capabilities. Yes, you're correct in assuming that 550W is the maximum it can supply, but one should always leave a bit of headroom and scope for future upgrades.

I haven't looked upon the PC case/cabinet yet. I am assuming that case would be common for any component we choose for PC. Am I correct ?
There's a vast area to choose from: cheap steel boxes, all the way up to huge, glass panel cases. Ideally, you need something that has plenty of room inside, not just for components, but also for good airflow through it - this will help vent the ejected heat from the CPU and GPU (as they emit most of the heat). Add in a couple of fans (one to draw air into the case, one to help vent), and everything should be fine. Which one to pick depends mostly on budget, but also how much space you have in the room that the PC will reside in.
 
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Mugsy

Posts: 651   +111
Purpose:

  • System should boot fast and should be smooth.
  • I need to connect my PC with multiple monitors or laptop screens for multi-tasking.
  • Daily usage like Microsoft Word, PPT, Excel. Copying files. Web browsing etc.
  • I want to play games like GTA 5, assassin's creed and any other games similar to that. (I am not a Pro gamer)
  • I do not do any video editing works.
As others have said, an APU probably isn't for you.

The target audience for an APU is "limited money & limited space" (and perhaps limited power consumption.) You get a processor that's slower than similar CPU's of the same series, and the built-in on-chip graphics are slower than even an old video card.

If money is not a huge issue and you don't need a PC that'll fit in a shoebox, there really is no reason to go with an APU (worse yet, many APU's don't play nice with high-end graphics cards, so if you ever decide you want to put an RTX card in your rig, it probably won't work with it.)
 
Unless severely budget limited (I.e., no GPU budget at all), and /or perhaps playing older games or content with 720P play at very modest settings, the 2000/3000 series APU's are not exactly CPU or iGPU powerhouses, you'd be better served with a better GPU and even a GTX1650 or RX5500XT, and , a better CPU such as an R5-1600AF or even the R3-3300X, or, better yet, the R5-3600 which is an overwhelming favorite go-to these days....

As for greater than 60 Hz gaming, you'd certainly be rarerely worrying about ever attaining such framerates from an APU. (To display more than 60 Hz, you need a monitor and GPU capable of the higher refresh rate, but, far more important to the gaming experience is to have enough GPU and CPU to not be dipping into the 20-sub-60 fps range. (I play BF1 on a 60 Hz TV, at 1080P, and, I can not complain at all, but, I certainly do not detect any stuttering/flickery gameplay....ever)

Most decent quality brand name PSUs in the 600-650 watt range are more than enough for 95% of most folks.

As for SSDs, I'd just get a 1 TB SSD if possible (even 1 TB NVME M.2 drives are reasonably priced when on sale), skipping spinning drives except for backup images unless you intend a HUGE array of installed games/ inventory or have bulk video storage needs....
 
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